Psychedelic drugs are considered to be a potential treatment for different mental health conditions nowadays. Some recent studies have proven that ‘magic’ mushrooms leave people feeling happier and more positive hours after their effect wears off.
A study made by Yale University analyzed 1,200 Americans at six different music festivals found evidence proving that psychedelic drugs can boost wellbeing. The study extended over a period of 2 years, between 2015-2017, and had a team of researchers who installed booths called “Play Games for Science” at their selected festivals between 10 AM and 1 PM.
They encouraged people to come and speak to them giving all the participants a survey on their use of psychoactive substances, giving away information like age, gender, level of education, religiousness, and political orientation. Every participant was asked if their experience at the festival transformed them in any way, making them different than they were before, and if so, whether they liked it or not.
As a result, most of the participants were people over 30 years old who attended four-year colleges. The majority (80%) drank alcohol, 50% used cannabis, 26,6% used psychedelic drugs and only 12,3% didn’t take any substances. It’s important to say that this study was made upon people who weren’t too drunk to answer correctly to the survey. The researchers put a question into their surveys as a sobriety test, for the result to be as close to reality as it could.
That 26.6% of the participants, the ones that took psychedelics, explained that they felt a state of happiness hours after the effect of the drugs has worn off. This study was led by neuroscientist Molly Crockett and found a stronger result in people who’d taken psychedelics in the last 24 hours. They all seemed to be experiencing the exact same feeling, they called it an “afterglow” that could be felt hours later.
Of course, it was impossible to find exactly which drug each person took, how much of it or whether they’ve mixed substances. As a result, the study concluded saying that psychedelics made people feel happier and socially connected.
“We found that psychedelic use is associated with transformative experience over and above expecting and desiring such experiences,” explained Crockett.
Nevertheless, the study didn’t analyze the negative reactions of the participants, keeping it focused on finding whether it was a transformative experience in a positive or negative manner.